Support for LAist comes from
Made of L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This


Doctors At Harbor-UCLA Medical Center Protest Deputy Shooting Of Patient

Our June member drive is live: protect this resource!
Right now, we need your help during our short June member drive to keep the local news you read here every day going. This has been a challenging year, but with your help, we can get one step closer to closing our budget gap. Today, put a dollar value on the trustworthy reporting you rely on all year long. We can't hold those in power accountable and uplift voices from the community without your partnership.

Doctors at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center are holding a rally today to protest the shooting of a mentally ill patient inside the facility by an L.A. County Sheriff’s deputy last week.

The Sheriff’s Department says a male Hispanic patient between 30 and 40 years old was smashing things with a metal medical device when he “turned his attention” on a deputy who was guarding a patient in another room.

The deputy opened fire, critically wounding the man.

Sheriff Alex Villanueva added later that it was like a scene out of the movie “The Shining.” The Frontline Wellness Network tweeted that the sheriff's comment was “an offensive attempt to demonize” a patient in a psychiatric crisis.

Support for LAist comes from

The deputy should have let hospital staff handle the situation, said Harbor-UCLA Dr. Lorenzo Gonzalez:

“We are very capable of handling agitated patients — patients with mental illnesses. These are things that we have specialized staff that are trained in order to de-escalate this.”

Gonzalez said guns should be banned from public hospitals.

The Board of Supervisors asked the inspector general to investigate the incident and called for a review of security procedures at public hospitals.

This is not the first shooting at Harbor-UCLA. In 2015, an LAPD officer fatally shot Ruben Herrara, 26, after he allegedly reached for his gun. The city of L.A. later paid Herrara's family $3.9 million to settle a federal wrongful death lawsuit.

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily newsletters. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.

Most Read